What can we learn for our growth and development from road paving work? What can possibly be uplifting about having the main thoroughfare torn up for a week?

You’re thinking, What could she possibly be thinking? She’s really lost it!

Last week Los Angeles tore up North La Brea Avenue near my home.

In order to repave the road, I learned, the old pavement is first chopped up. There is a special truck that moves slowly and methodically down the road hacking away at the layers of pavement. The material is swallowed up into a contraption on the truck. These large pieces are shot down a slide into another truck that grinds the material into tiny pieces. The two trucks must move at the same pace. And what happens when the “hacking truck” needs to turn to go down the other side of the street? My friend told me it beeped two times as a cue to the “grinder truck.” Then in perfect synchronistic motion, the trucks turned to hack and grind the other side of the street.

The street was bumpy uneven pavement. And the sidewalk was covered with dust from the ground up asphalt. It resembled soot from a chimney.

But not for long.

At the end of the week, the section of road was blocked off again. The paver trucks moved slowly up one side and down the other. I can’t say that the paver trucks were quiet! Our homes shook as if there was a constant earthquake!

The result:  clean, sleek, smooth pavement.

Here’s what I learned:

1.     In order to change negative character traits or negative attitudes, completely rip out the old beliefs and views.

2.     Grind up the old thought patterns and toss them out.

3.     But don’t do this alone! Get a buddy – someone who will catch the discarded patterns and make sure we throw them out.

4.     It’s sometimes earth-shaking to make changes.

5.     Replace the old patterns with clean, sleek, strong, new healthy attitudes.


Paving North La Brea Avenue was not about paving the road. It was about paving me.